A ghastly performance from the Boise State Broncos offense derailed what was an outstanding performance from their defense in the loss to San Diego State.
Entering Saturday’s game, it was expected both defenses would figure heavily in the outcome. Both consistently rank in the top of Mountain West. Neither side disappointed on Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately for the Boise State Broncos, their offense failed to show up until it was too late.
And despite a solid performance by Boise State’s defense, San Diego State’s was that much better.
The Aztecs took advantage of three Boise State turnovers, stifling Brett Rypien and company all afternoon in defeating the Broncos 19-13 in Boise.
Rypien was off all day, finishing 21-41 for 170 yards and two interceptions.
The Aztecs and Rocky Long’s 3-3-5 defense frustrated Boise State from the get go. Even when Rypien had time to throw, passes were off the mark.
Stagnant as the offense was, the Broncos still had a chance late in the fourth quarter. Rypien finally got into a rhythm, connecting on 6-8 for 63 yards on a scoring drive that went 73 yards in 2:02.
After a 23-yard completion to CT Thomas down to the Aztecs’ one-yard line, Alexander Mattison punched it in for his second touchdown of the day. The extra point was missed and Boise State trailed 19-13 with a little over three minutes left.
The Bronco defense, which held San Diego State to 267 total yards, rose to the occasion again. Riley Whimpey got a sack on second down and the Aztecs failed to convert on third. A punt and 11-yard Avery Williams return gave Boise State the ball at their own 33 with 1:59 left.
One completion, an intentional grounding, and two incomplete passes later, the Broncos were left sitting at 1-1 in Mountain West play.
The teams exchanged punts to start the day, a foreshadowing of things to come as a total of 17 punts between the two teams were executed on the day.
On the Broncos second series, Rypien threw his first interception of the day. Darren Hall picked it off in Bronco territory to set up the Aztecs with great field position.
Fortunately, the defense held the Aztecs to a field goal as John Barron’s 36-yard make put San Diego State up 3-0.
Another three-and-out by Boise State gave way to another punt.
Quinn Skillin’s punt traveled 56-yards and was muffed by San Diego State’s Ethan Dedeaux. Riley Whimpey recovered at the Aztecs four-yard line and three plays later Mattison punched it in to give Boise State a 7-3 lead.
Rypien later threw his second interception, but the defense came up huge again. Chase Hatada forced a fumble on a 18-yard reception that was recovered by Tyler Horton.
It was more of the same from the Bronco offense and this time a bobbled snap on a punt gave the Aztecs the ball at Boise State’s 31.
Another field goal by Barron, this time from 41 yards, made it 7-6.
The Aztecs would take the lead after yet another turnover. Chase Cord’s arm was hit on a third-and-three pass attempt and the ball was intercepted by Ronley Lakalaka. Chase Jasmin scored on a two-yard run and Aztecs led 13-7, ultimately taking that lead into halftime.
Despite a few solid runs from Mattison and moments of the offense walking up, nothing materialized for the Broncos in the third quarter.
Fortunately, the defense was holding up their end of the bargain, with highlights including a Durrant Miles sack and a fourth-down stop.
Cord saw more playing time at the end of the third, early fourth but even he found little success.
The Aztecs finished out their scoring with 10:10 left in the game on Jordan Byrd’s 72-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion was missed and the Aztecs were up 19-7.
Minus that long run, the Broncos held the Aztecs to 43 carries for 82 yards. They also held San Diego State to 20 percent (3-15) on third-down conversions.
Mattison finished with 66 yards on 25 carries. No other Bronco running back had a carry. A.J. Richardson led the team with five receptions, while John Hightower and Sean Modster had four each.
Jasmin finished with 78 yards rushing for the Aztecs while quarterback Ryan Agnew was 8-15 for 113 yards.
Boise State will look to shake off the upset loss when they go to Nevada next Saturday.